When you are injured due to a fire or extreme circumstance that results in burns to your body, it can be painful both physically and emotionally. Whichever type of burn you have – from first to third degree – your injury is likely going to result in emotional pain and possibly scarring or more severe long-term damage.
Sometimes these burns fall under the category of “personal injury,” meaning you can seek compensation for your damages. To determine whether your individual burns fall in this area, you must first understand the differences in each type of burn injury.
Types of Burns
There’s no doubt about it; all burns are painful. However, the damages that each burn inflicts result in different wounds to each layer of skin. This affects how much treatment is necessary and how long your recovery will be.
First degree burns affect the outer layer of skin, or the epidermis, only and, although very painful, tend to heal within 3-5 days. Burns like this usually only require hospitalization in severe cases and the effects are not usually long-term.
Second degree burns can be divided into two categories – partial and full thickness. With partial thickness burns, the epidermis and upper layers of the dermis are damaged. Blisters may be apparent, and the skin appears wet. Although quite painful, it will usually heal within a few weeks with minimal scarring.
Full thickness wounds destroy the epidermis and most of the dermis, leaving diminished or no sensation. These types of wounds will require skin grafting or other treatment to heal and can result in long-term scarring and reduced sensation.
Third degree burns are the most severe kind of burn, resulting in damage to all of the layers of skin. Usually these burns are not even painful because the pain receptors were destroyed as well as the layers of dermis, but that makes them even more damaging. These wounds require long-term treatment and will have lasting scarring and other long-term consequences.
Does Your Burn Qualify as a Personal Injury?
To determine if your injury qualifies for compensation under terms of a personal injury case, you and your attorney must consider a few factors.
The largest factor is the severity of the injury. Burn injuries often result in higher compensation because of the pain and suffering, as well as the disfiguration the victim endures. Compensation depends on the permanence of the injury as well as the location, visibility, and amount of scarring.
Another factor is the negligence of the person causing the injury and their ability to pay a settlement. Burns that occurred due to workplace injuries, car accidents, or medical malpractice will fall under those liability policies. For more information on what constitutes a personal injury under these qualifications, consult these handy guides on medical malpractice and car accidents.
Compensation for Burns as Personal Injuries
If you have any damage from a burn that will result in long-term disfigurement or loss of sensation due to someone else’s neglect, speak to a knowledgeable attorney today to determine if you are entitled to compensation for your injuries.